If you're an Xbox One owner planning on picking up a Series X right at launch, your first experience upon turning the console on will probably be pretty similar to starting up your One today. A new report confirms that Microsoft is improving and optimizing the Xbox One's current dashboard interface for the Series X instead of doing a full redesign.
Word of this comes from Tom Warren, senior editor at The Verge, by way of some tweets he made over the weekend and a new report on next-console interfaces, published today. Warren confirms there will be additional things added to account for some of the Series X's new features, but "the UI and dash will be the same," speed and performance gains aside.
This is not totally out-of-left field given Microsoft's emphasis on carrying forward the lessons learned with Xbox One, and its efforts to ensure cross-compatibility of games and features. The Xbox One dashboard has also kept pace with the modern technology and design principles of Microsoft Windows since launch, so it makes sense that the trend would continue with Series X.
At launch, the Xbox One broke from the Xbox 360's own late-cycle, tile-based Metro dashboard in favor of one geared more heavily toward the One's cable box and TV integrations. The New Xbox One Experience update brought things closer to a unified Windows 10 layout across the One and PC in 2015, and Microsoft's been rolling out smaller performance and feature updates since. Warren says that updates released for the Xbox One dashboard in the coming months are happening "in prep for Series X."
Sony, meanwhile, will be taking a different approach with the PlayStation 5. Though the final interface may end up sharing visual and functional cues with the PS4's, PlayStation Vice President of UX Design Matt MacLaurin says his team is working on "a 100% overhaul of PS4 UI." We only caught the smallest glimpses of what appeared to be a gray, sparkling sign-in screen during last week's PS5 reveal event.
Slow, unresponsive console interfaces have been a persistent problem throughout this current generation, so whether we're seeing a brand new dashboard or something familiar with either console, the big hope is that they're fast and easy-to-use by comparison. New boot-up animation aside, maybe using a Series X's interface won't look all that different from the One's today, but in an ideal world we won't need to do much fiddling with menus for new features like Smart Delivery and Quick Resume anyway.